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Marie Marley
Marie Marley is the author of Come Back Early Today: A Memoir of Love, Alzheimer’s and Joy. This book tells the powerful 30-year love story of a young American woman and a delightfully colorful, wickedly eccentric Romanian gentleman and scholar, interspersed with advice and inspiration for Alzheimer’s caregivers everywhere.

In addition to being a compelling love story, this award-winning memoir shows how one woman solved several specific problems that typically arise when caring for a person with dementia.

Alzheimer’s caregivers who have read the book say it helped them very much. Former caregivers say they wish they’d read it when they were caregivers.

Come Back Early Today will make you laugh; it will make you cry. If you’re caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s it will give you inspiration and advice. But mostly it will give you hope and it will help you see that there can be happiness – even joy – amid the darkness of dementia.

The book was a finalist in the Santa Fe Writer’s Project Literary Awards, Eric Hoffer First Horizon Awards, Readers Choice competition, Editors and Writers International Awards, and Indie Excellence Awards. The Foreword was written by Gregg Warshaw, MD, Past President of the American Geriatrics Society. Go to to sign up for Marie's Newsletter and read the first two chapters for free.

Marie’s website contains a wealth of information for Alzheimer’s caregivers. She can be reached at

Entries by Marie Marley

New Book Offers Hope for Alzheimer's Caregivers

(0) Comments | Posted November 25, 2015 | 5:40 AM

Today I want to let you know about a new book for Alzheimer's caregivers that I wrote with neurologist Daniel C. Potts, MD, FAAN. It's entitled Finding Joy in Alzheimer's: New Hope for Caregivers, and has a foreword by Maria Shriver, whose father, Sargent Shriver, had the disease.


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How I Got My Beloved Romanian Soul Mate With Alzheimer's to Stop Driving

(0) Comments | Posted November 14, 2015 | 9:08 AM

Late one evening I was deeply immersed in editing the photographs I'd taken at the Cincinnati Zoo that day when I was startled by the phone ringing. I thought it was probably Ed, my beloved Romanian soul mate.

But it wasn't.

It was a sweet female voice I didn't recognize...

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Focus on the Roses in Alzheimer's Care

(0) Comments | Posted November 7, 2015 | 5:05 AM

"The optimist sees the rose and not its thorns; the pessimist stares at the thorns, oblivious of the rose." - Kahlil Gibran

John is distraught when he visits his wife, Jean. First of all, he finds the facility per se depressing. While walking to his wife's room,...

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3 Things to Never Say to an Alzheimer's Caregiver

(0) Comments | Posted October 31, 2015 | 8:41 AM

One of my recent articles published here was 5 Things to Never Say to a Person Who Has Alzheimer's. Today's article focuses on things to never say to an Alzheimer's caregiver.

There are several things you should never say. Here are three important ones:

1. "What a Shame:"...

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Surviving as an Alzheimer's Caregiver

(5) Comments | Posted October 23, 2015 | 10:42 AM

I was an Alzheimer's caregiver for seven years. I was not prepared for the mental and physical demands of caring for someone with dementia. As time passed my emotional state declined as fast as my loved one, Ed's dementia progressed. It became a vicious cycle.

How did I cope? How...

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5 Things to Never Say to a Person Who Has Alzheimer's

(36) Comments | Posted October 15, 2015 | 2:50 PM

Yesterday afternoon I walked into Mary's spacious room. Mary is a woman who has few visitors and whom I've volunteered to spend a little time with every week. I greeted her, complimented her on her beautiful turquoise sweater, and shook her hand.

Then I sat down at her little...

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Nursing Home Placement: Damned if You Do, Damned if You Don't

(1) Comments | Posted October 8, 2015 | 10:59 AM

I'm talking here about the dreaded "N" word -- nursing home. I'm talking about placing your loved one with Alzheimer's in a care facility. Virtually no one wants to do it and few if any people want to go. This will be one of the most difficult, heart-wrenching decisions you,...

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Why I Love Being Bipolar

(9) Comments | Posted September 15, 2015 | 10:45 AM

I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder when I was in my mid-30s. Bipolar disorder doesn't run in my family -- it gallops! Numerous relatives have it as did several others who have passed away.

I have seen this disorder torture many of these people and, in some cases, destroy their...

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Compose Yourself!

(0) Comments | Posted September 7, 2015 | 7:08 AM

Author's Note: Nearly every week I publish an article here about Alzheimer's. And they're all deadly serious. A co-worker once asked me if I ever laugh. And another one asked me if I ever write something just for fun. So I wrote the following in response to those questions. I...

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7 Tips for Downsizing Without the Heartache

(6) Comments | Posted September 3, 2015 | 8:20 AM

It isn't uncommon for people to want to downsize to a smaller home either when they retire or just before retirement. Let's look at reasons they do that, some of the heartaches that can be associated with it and 7 tips for avoiding that heartache.

Why People Typically Downsize: The...

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Despite Alzheimer's, He Praised His Loved One to the Very End

(5) Comments | Posted August 28, 2015 | 12:10 PM

We often read about people with Alzheimer's who are incredibly difficult to get along with. I'd like to balance that out by providing some examples of my Romanian life partner, Ed, who started off that way but later became one of the sweetest, most loving, adorable people you'd ever want...

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People Living With Alzheimer's Can Still Enjoy Life

(7) Comments | Posted August 22, 2015 | 9:03 AM

Many people regard Alzheimer's as a cruel and devastating disease that destroys its 'victims.' One that robs them of their very humanity. Caregivers may fall into a period of deep depression and despondence when the diagnosis is made. Anticipatory grief also may develop. One realizes that life as it had...

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Denial May Deprive Alzheimer's Caregivers of Joy

(0) Comments | Posted August 14, 2015 | 5:59 AM

Alexandru was a close relative of Ed - my beloved Romanian soulmate of 30 years. Alexandru was visiting Ed from out of town. One evening they had a long talk about a wide range of topics - most of which concerned Alexandru's professional issues. The next day Ed had no...

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Simple Pleasures Can Bring Joy to a Person With Alzheimer's

(0) Comments | Posted August 5, 2015 | 8:08 AM

Sometimes it takes so little to bring joy to a person with Alzheimer's. The following story is a case in point.

One day I arrived at the Alois Alzheimer Center to visit Ed, my beloved Romanian soul mate. As soon as I got out of the car, I realized I'd...

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A Great Resource for Caregivers: The Alzheimer's Reading Room

(0) Comments | Posted July 25, 2015 | 5:35 AM

If you have a loved one with dementia, my first suggestion would be to find the very best doctors possible. My second piece of advice would be to go to the Alzheimer's Reading Room. It's a free blog that focuses on Alzheimer's disease and the art of Alzheimer's caregiving. Its...

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Who Suffers More -- People With Alzheimer's or Their Loved Ones?

(4) Comments | Posted July 17, 2015 | 10:14 AM

People with Alzheimer's disease can become upset and agitated about things that happen to them. And when you, as the caregiver, witness your loved one's anguish, you may become distressed, too -- sometimes more so than your loved one.

There is a way, however, to help reduce your stress...

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Embracing Grief When a Loved One Has Alzheimer's

(0) Comments | Posted July 9, 2015 | 10:04 AM

"There is no greater sorrow than to remember happiness in a time of misery." -Dante

One day when I was visiting Ed, my beloved Romanian life partner of 30 years, in the memory care facility where he lived, they were having a festive sing-along. I sat down beside him...

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When a Loved One Has Alzheimer's -- Realization vs. Acceptance

(0) Comments | Posted June 29, 2015 | 3:10 AM

When a loved one has Alzheimer's it's critically important to overcome denial and realize that they have it. And it's even more important to accept the diagnosis and all it means. These are to two entirely different things. It's one thing to finally realize someone close to you has Alzheimer's....

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Making Final Arrangements for a Terminally-Ill Loved One

(0) Comments | Posted June 25, 2015 | 5:35 AM

No one wants to make final arrangements for a terminally -ill family member. It's painful to think about any loved one's eventual passing, but it's important to make the arrangements sooner rather than later. Why? Because once you have taken care of all the plans, you can just relax and...

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Nursing Home Placement Can Be the Most Loving Choice for a Person With Alzheimer's

(9) Comments | Posted June 20, 2015 | 9:23 AM

Sarah Jones, an 85-year-old woman with Alzheimer's who lived in Columbus, Ohio, was unable to care for herself. She could no longer prepare meals, she couldn't run the vacuum cleaner, and she didn't understand what money was, let alone manage her finances. What's worse, she was incontinent and couldn't bathe...

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